WARNING issued to Irish holidaymakers ahead of UNBEARABLE weather

Clay Curtis
August 5, 2018

People refreshed themselves on the beach during a hot summer day in Barcelona, Spain, today.

More than 700 firefighters are battling a major wildfire in southern Portugal's Algarve region, as parts of Europe continue to swelter.

In Spain, heat stroke killed at least three men.

A continent-wide heatwave in recent weeks has seen drought and wildfires from Greece to Sweden.

Spanish authorities put out a heat wave warning for most of central Spain, expected to last until Sunday with temperatures of over 42C in some parts of Andalusia and Extremadura.

The extreme heat was driven by a hot air mass from North Africa, which travelled across the Iberian peninsula.

In July, the Scandinavian country witnessed record temperatures and wildfires that extended into the Arctic Circle. Portuguese weather forecasters said the hot air from North Africa also brought particles of sand, which tend to subdue maximum temperatures slightly.

According to Met Office data, the record for Spain was 47.3 degree Celsius, recorded on July 13, 2017 in Montoro, east of Cordoba, and for Portugal 47.4 degrees Celsius on August 1 2003 in Amareleja, in the south-central Beja district.

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Seeking to prevent more deaths after 114 people were killed in two massive forest blazes past year in Portugal, civil protection sent mobile text alerts warning the population of an extreme risk of fires in some regions, including around the capital Lisbon. Large parts of Portugal are on red alert on the Civil Protection Agency's danger scale.

Met Office meteorologist Nicola Maxey said: "Temperatures will increase by a couple of degrees day by day with highs in the upper 20Cs quite widely by Friday and into the low 30Cs in places at the weekend".

It is expected that the sizzling temperatures will begin on Thursday and will last through the weekend with all time highs due to be recorded.

Combined with high pressure in charge, blue skies every day, and the ground already warmed up, that leads to a day-on-day build, combining to produce these intense temperatures.

In Germany, state rail operator Deutsche Bahn said it was offering free water to passengers in case of delays.

In Switzerland, mountain railways reported booming business as city dwellers fled to the Alps. EDF said the decision was made to avoid overheating the rivers.

Another heatwave is coming to Europe, and the record temperature of 118.4F could be broken.

Further north in Scandinavia, temperatures hit records until a few days ago.

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